Thoughts on Long Range Shooting
The sign is misleading. Yes, we were shooting on a part of the range that had targets at 25 yards, but we weren’t shooting at them, we were shooting at the berm, 100 yards away.
I had the chance to spend the day at the range with my son and my brother-in-law last week. When we arrived at the range, there were a half dozen or so other groups there shooting, and we had to wait for a lull in the action – a cold range – so we could go put our targets out to shoot. Normally, we use zombie targets and bullseye targets at 25 yards or closer.
But since we got impatient, I took out my reborn Ruger 10/22 and started shooting at targets on the berm, 100 yards away. Using some pieces of paper, I was able to dial in the scope within a few shots, and soon we were making those pieces of paper dance.
Soon, we broke out the AR-15, and found out that it was already sighted for 100 yards, and we made the paper dance with 5.56×45. My son’s grin as he made shot after shot at 100 yards was a big as his face.
Then, out came the Browning Buck Mark with the Tasco red dot sight. Within a few shots, I was able to adjust the sight on it to hit the paper at 100 yards. My brother-in-law Mike, the new shooter, thought this was very cool. He was right.
I was able even to get good long range shots with my Glocks, once I tried it, and held over the right amount.
After a while, the range went silent, and we put out the zombies and bullseyes at the 25 yard target holders. Then, on a whim, we put out a few clay pigeons out on the berm.
Then we started shooting the zombies, but, after a few minutes, we went back to shooting the long shots. On the 10/22 I dialed the scope out to 6x, and I was able to break clay pretty consistently. Even the AR-15 and SKS made good hits. We chased pieces of paper all over the berm.
For most of my shooting “career,” the long distance shot has been a mystery. Frankly, sometimes even a 25 yard shot is a mystery. I know why – bad shooting fundamentals. Near perfect sight alignment and trigger control are essential. And I know why I haven’t been able to improve these – I don’t practice them enough.
So, a day of fun – discovering that I, and a first time new shooter for that matter, can make 100 yard shots with a .22LR pistol – had led me to a commitment to practice the long shot more. One range near me has a 300 yard rifle range with steel targets. I see a lot of ringing steel in my future.
Lord knows, my USPSA and GSSF scores will improve, without the Mikes on the 25 yard targets. Plus, I suspect my shooting will be even more fun, because I know that when I improve on the long shots, those shorter shots will be a lot more fun, too.